Warshaw Ghetto

Sahbra Markus Surviving The Holocaust Part 2 Life and Death in The Warsaw Ghetto

by Ari Schonbrun



Sahbra Markus Surviving The Holocaust Part 2 Life and Death in The Warsaw Ghetto


Sahbra Markus continues to share her amazing story with us in Part 2 of the series. In this episode, she details what life was like in the Warsaw Ghetto. The pain and despair that everyone went through and also the kindness that helped keep children alive. It is a remarkable story that shows us the perseverance of the human spirit and amazing generosity. That even those that have so little would give to others. It is a story you have to hear.

Episode Transcription

Intro Plays

Ari: Welcome to whispers and bricks. My name is Gary show and I’m your host. Today’s episode is part two of Sabra Marcus amazing escape from the Holocaust. Please welcome Sahbra Marcus.

She’s going to give us the rest of her story

and Sahbra please continue.

Sahbra: my parents left the machine after they got married

how they met I don’t know. All I remember from the stories is that

my father realizing that things are becoming very terrible all over Poland

the 30s brought a great deal. I can’t I can’t think of another word ugly. Things are becoming ugly people ugly atmosphere ugly.

And my papa said

the only place to be safe that has been its expression. If you steal something

is endearment name for me from ANOVAs Anushka Anushka. If you of course I’m sure you’ll never do it but if you ever stole something

Why would you hide it?

So pop I don’t know. I haven’t experimented in this field.

As he’s laughing He said there’s only one place to hide Waipapa he goes straight to the police station and find a corner someplace.

I said the police station why? He says simple. They’ll never look for it over there.

I said well, I that kind of logic. Okay. I get it. Okay. I said to what did you do? My mind I packed our Excuse me? This is 1937 Mama and I packed our things and said we’re going to do what cousin? What’s his name? Dad? What cousin? What’s his name?

18 8080 and 50 that cousin. Remember him? Know who Romberg who’s remembered.

We’re going to go and see what he did.

So my mom and my father went to Warsaw

didn’t take them long.

And they created business after business. Popper was a brilliant pastry chef.

And people love sweets. And especially when the war is there’s a threat of war.

But this point at 1937 There was no war thing so fine.

They created a bakery. Then they created another bakery. Then they had one of the first sidewalk cafes besides the one on the inside.

Serving magnificent torts and beautiful pastries.

Making money and make more money and making

And then Hashem decided to be loving and kind to them, and bless them with the verse of two boys, twin boys.

And soon after that

order came out

when the Nazis have attacked,

the order came

that all Jews are to be moved into a small section of Warsaw

that would become the ghetto.

Those that had money, those that were well to do had a chance to survive.

But the picture in the ghetto, which most people do not wish to speak of, but there are numerous

pictures left that you can actually see.

And what you will see a little boys and girls sitting on the ground with one or two of their siblings dead that their feet from starvation,

or disease are both

people walking by ignoring them.

Others are sitting with their handout for a piece of bread is again being ignored.

Some had none to give, and others just didn’t care. They were concerned about themselves.

My parents

were in the theater.

They were sent there. Nobody had a choice.

They were lucky to know many good people

that were selling my parents, belongings, and Senate selling their businesses and their home

so that they could have some money for food.

In the ghetto.

To say life was hard

is the

most horrific understatement of the century.

The only thing people didn’t do is is eat other human beings.

But it wasn’t far from getting to that point.

My mother found out she was pregnant.

That was one of the most horrific moments of her life.

She kept saying

we can’t have a child now.

We can’t have a child in this place. We can’t have a child in the ghetto.

I have no breaths. I have no milk. I’m dry.

This environment this health. I can’t


her hair hadn’t started yet.


two months I will.

Mama never spoke much of the subject. She was in so much pain.

I was born in July.

Two months prior to that.

A truck came into the


Mama left the two little boys with her close neighbor friend. The neighbor was there with her children. Several other ladies were there with their children. And they all were on the sidewalk letting the children have some fresh air instead of being cooped up in some basement or some

more room that thinks of mold and mildew.

Everybody was afraid you could see the fear you could smell the fear of each person.

Mama went upstairs to get some water for the children.

When she came downstairs there were no children.

o’clock at combat by

all the children were flown on the truck.

There were no infants anywhere

Wherever they found outside, wherever was hidden

mama came down and she said I kept asking where the children were the children I have brought water for all the children

no one responded because everyone was in hysterics screaming and crying all around all along the sidewalk.

Finally, somebody was able to speak up and said there are no children.

They’re on their way to to a death camp.

My mother’s mind

had snapped. To a certain point.


was no longer the person my father knew. She was no longer that kind loving wonderful, brilliant, brilliant.

Even when I knew my mother and she was broken to pieces, she was still brilliant

she stood there and she screamed

and she screamed and they could not stop her from screaming

until her voice was gone. could not stop screaming

my name is Shay for my two little lambs

mine the climb was shaved for

my two little lambs

these then align the kingdom

where are my children? She never stopped saying where are my children?

And to add insult to injury

two months later

after they were murdered I showed up

Why did I say insult to injury?

Gods she said took away her two boys

and punished her for something she doesn’t know what she might have done. punished her by giving her girl

not a little girl to replace

to beauty so to voice that output taken.

Where a girl who needs to go big chip to my boys

my papa send a little boy

place wasn’t tight shut as yet. You could send somebody and little boys. Pardon me.

Little boys were able to sneak out somehow between the Varick somehow between they will they were able to go through old buildings broken buildings, bombed buildings.

tapa said buy me a cup.

A tub to wash closing in.

Mr. Marcus, why do you need a tub? I needed as a bed for my little girl and I needed as a tub to wash her. The little child and for washing the clothes, but I also needed for her to look for a place to sleep.

gave him money to bribe he says if you need to steal one, but don’t come back without

a little boy Sure enough came back with a small tub.

And my father also had send another boy to same time to buy a large bottle of alcohol.

Mr. Marquez, why do you need about alcohol

so I can pour it inside and burn it and purify it.

So that doesn’t hurt my beauty for Lego girl.

Papa said if they hear her cry, she’ll be dead immediately.

Come boys. Let’s see how we can save this child.

They start searching buildings and found one with a basement and then they found a way to remove it

trap door to go into a Sabra basement where the sewers will flowing.

And that’s where Papa has set up camp.

This is where he and his little girl are going to ledge.

This is where he and his little girl and Mama, if we can drag her down there, that’s where they’re going to live.

And when they need to be on top to be visible, so they didn’t escape.

He left the little boys down there with long sticks to fight off the rats. So I wouldn’t be

and this have gone on, and on and on.

And every now and again, one of his Polish friends dressed in some very severe, serious


would show up

and then

beat my father a few times. So good measure and hand them over a small bag of diamonds

or gold.

The profits from selling some of Papa’s property.

Anyone that we teach you all, all you wonderful people assuming, let me teach you.

If God forbid, if God forbid, war ever comes to our shores?


do not collect money. Money is useless money is what you’ve learned to warm up your feet.

The only thing that’s of any value are diamonds and gold.

Nothing else? Of course, a loaf of bread. But it might cost you five carat diamond. You still need the diamonds?


Did you want to say something to me? No, no, no, no. Okay. So papa received every few weeks, some Polacks would come beat him up a little bit. Nothing, nothing drastic, nothing terrible, just for show

and put stuff in his pocket as they were so called citing and use terrible language that only Nazis would. But they had to do that.

Because otherwise, why would that Pollock be there and why is it you’re Miss chip me watch where you’re going.

Papa was sniffing around. Oh, there’s always a bad apple.

Always some bad apples some place in that barrel. You just have to dive deep enough far enough and search. And you’ll find that

after months, and months, and months and months, many months. The situation the starvation in the camp was getting worse continuously.

Every time Papa had food, he would hide some of it under his coat.

And he’d go to some of the children sitting on the sidewalk with their feet in the gutter. You saw the starvation, their eyes were as big as their face.

And it’s a countless me some of the kids would follow him. He’d go into into a hallway he would go into a stairwell of any of the buildings and break up a loaf of bread, giving everyone a chunk and say don’t go out. Eat all of it. We have later said no, no, no, no. Eat all of it now because if someone touches you on pints, they will eat it and beat you up. Eat all of it now. And here is a bottle. Drink as much as you can. Each one drink as much as you can. I’d like to think that having done that so many times that entire length of time that they were there.

Were there for two years, maybe more.

Hopefully that helped some of these children survive.

I pray to God I pray that some of them survived and bless a man that came and gave them to the bread and water every so often.

While we’re still in that horrible helpful, Warsaw Ghetto,

every morning, you so carts every morning you so carts, go through the ghetto go through the streets, when they picked up course after course after course, from in front of the building, right in the Main Street as a book that’s to cross the street and drop that. On the sidewalks everywhere you looked, there were corpses.

And every morning, Jews with buggies

Jews with carts

came to collect some

people say

things about hell.

I’m sure they understand what they think they’re saying.

But I promise you, they do not.

They don’t have a clue what hell as hell is the worst of ghetto

with hundreds of little children and adults of all ages, dropping dead from sheer starvation

and sound from disease. And to them if you ask them, they would tell you it was a merciful day.

They start suffering.

They stop suffering. They understand.

I know what that means.

I didn’t know I was going to know what that means. I found out later

a few years.


Ari: let me just let me just say we’re taught we’re listening here to Sahbra Marcus, as she tells her incredible story of her life in the Warsaw Ghetto. This is the end of part two. Part three will be coming

in the next. Within the next few days. We’ll be getting to part three.

You’ve been listening to whispers and bricks, part two of Sahbra Marcus amazing story of her escape from the Holocaust. Stay tuned for part three coming soon. And until then, listen to the whispers avoid the bricks and never ever give up on your dreams. Bye for now.